America’s CAREN act will punish racially-motivated emergency calls

The “Caution Against Racially Exploitative Non-Emergencies” or CAREN for short is an act that looks to punish calls made to the police on racial grounds.



Under the legislation, any calls motivated by an individual’s race, religion, sex, or any other protected class by designating such reports as a hate crime. The legislation will also provide a civil remedy for those harmed by discriminatory 911 calls.

Per The Hill, “Walton’s bill comes after California Assemblyman Rob Bonta introduced a bill last month that would classify discriminatory 911 calls as a hate crime in the state.

Adrienne Samuels Gibbs of Momentum noted that “although it is already illegal in most places to make false claims to 911, Walton’s efforts make a lot of sense. His ‘Caution Against Racially Exploitative Non-Emergencies’ act is genius. No matter what happens legislatively, it has made headlines and raised awareness of the issue most recently brought to light by people like Amy Cooper.

Amy Cooper was the New Yorker who made international headlines after the calling the police on a fellow parkgoer, bird-watcher Christian Cooper. Christian asked Amy to leash her pup, leading her to threaten him with a 911 call.

“I’m going to tell them there’s an African American man threatening my life,” Amy told the man, according to a viral video of the incident.

Amy Cooper was later charged. District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr said in a statement that his office had charged Amy Cooper with falsely reporting the confrontation a misdemeanour. In the statement, he urged anyone who had been the target of false reporting to contact prosecutors.

“We are strongly committed to holding perpetrators of this conduct accountable,” he said.

Share via